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AT ALBION, WE DO THINGS DIFFERENTLY…
Looking for marketing campaigns that can pay for themselves many times over? We stake our reputation and our fee on getting great results. So if we don’t increase your rankings, traffic or sales (or reduce your cost per acquisition) you won’t pay a penny.
Generating over 5 times more website visitors in less than a dozen weeks via a handful of intensive SEO sessions provided London Role Play with a large increase in sales. The brand now dominates the search results throughout the UK with over 50 #1 positions in Google search results.
Generating almost 3 times more visits each week for a Kite Surfing brand was a feat that totally exceeded their expectations. And by teaching BEKS how to achieve top Google rankings they were able to complement our one-off campaign with further improvements in-house.
Suffering from badly designed and awkwardly worded landing pages, the American University of Integrative Sciences needed our help to understand their enrolment page’s ‘conversion killing’ flaws – we also redesigned them to vastly increase enquiries from potential new students.
One of the most common issues we see on education product and service websites is that the website design agency or internal marketing team that made the site don’t enjoy the benefits of understanding Conversion Rate Optimisation best practices. Many simply select a pre-designed, pre-built website template that lacks some of the layouts and design elements known to turn more visitors into leads via online contact forms. Worse is that university faculties often dictate the wording of online brochures and course pages without fully understanding a number of psychological sales techniques that are known to encourage their readers to take action.
Ask yourself if you know for a fact that the wording on your homepage works better to generate enrollment enquiries than a different mix of wording? How do you know if your booking form is placed in the optimal location to show site visitors the most relevant courses? And how do you know if your homepage is missing some of the most important trust elements potential students need to see in order to go ahead and get in touch to discuss your course?
The answers to the above questions come in the form of conversion rate optimisation best practices and A/B split testing. These tried and tested techniques allow Albion’s university and training provider clients to end many internal squabbles about how to word important marketing copy and to identify which elements mean the most to potential students when they decide which establishment to study in. So, do you know if the tipping factor relates to your campus rules, your extracurricular activities or your placements and partnerships with local employers? A/B split testing allows you to answer factually, with nothing left to guesswork. Many of the issues we resolve for our clients concern the below questions:
Does your enrollment enquiry or booking form sit in a prime location at the top of your homepage?
If you answered no, then be aware that only a fraction of your next cohort of potential students will take the extra time to go and find the location of the form. Many won’t even see the most relevant courses and its benefits simply because they don’t see a simple form that lets them search or select relevant courses. Generally, the easiest way to show visitors if you offer a particular course is by allowing them to search for it – rather than forcing them to guess the right faculty and school then clicking through to find the courses list. So the search box is of utmost importance to universities, colleges and schools that offer a wide range of courses.
Let your visitors input the general name of a course and serve them with a list of relevant opportunities. Many will want to input the dates they want to attend or will want to select the qualification level in order to reduce the large number of internal search results they have to wade through in order to find what they want. And if they don’t find what they want quickly they are not going to see the benefits of studying with you or see the other factors that help people justify getting in touch to enrol or visit during an open day.
Does your homepage show a large slideshow that showcases your best offerings?
Sometimes it makes sense to show slides that illustrate the benefits of studying with your organisation, but many in-house web designers and agencies don’t realise that homepage slideshows are one of the worst “conversion killers”. The reason for this is that often the most important benefits of studying with you is hidden on the second or third slides. And you guessed it, nobody sticks around to read everything in all the slides. Indeed, the benefits of studying with your school over others and the features you offer are essential elements that should be visible on your homepage at all times. You wouldn’t hide your best features from your customers, so why be tempted into this just because a slideshow is able to show some nice images you have at hand?
Do you highlight important trust elements so that visitors can skim read your homepage?
Split-tests have shown time and again that unless your visitors can see the most common benefits and trust elements mentioned above, they are much less likely to fill out a form or pick up the phone. Logos of associations you are a member of, or logos of placement partners, approvals by your local council are just as important as guarantees, testimonials and user reviews. Users who don’t see these elements at a glance often don’t enjoy the “momentum” that encourages them to engage with your university or school. And it is this momentum that creates a positive impression and helps them take the effort to download your prospectus or get in touch.
At Albion we make the process of creating new variations of your homepage, specific course pages and enrollment forms a simple one. We use our knowledge of CRO best practices and clever use of A/B split testing tools such as Optimizely to make the variations your, or our, team suggests. This allows a share of your existing traffic to be directed to each variation and allows you to sit back and monitor the results as they come in. Only when you see the proof that one variation generates more enquiries than the other are you able to know, for a fact, that you were leaving money on the table.
There are an array of other well-known website conversion rate optimisation techniques that are proven to turn more website visitors into students of under-subscribed courses. If you have courses with empty seats that need to be filled, take advantage of what is known to work best to increase traffic and turn that traffic into visits that result in phone calls or contact form conversions.
CRO and split testing are key elements that allow many leading education brands to benefit from optimum copy and layouts on their websites. It is also one of the main ways many education brands are able to increase the profits that help them enjoy continued ongoing growth. To join them, simply request a free website CRO review to see if your reliance on untested wording or layouts from a non-specialist website designer are responsible for sub-optimal conversion rates. The findings are often very eye-opening and understanding potential improvements may be the most important thing your team does to ensure you enjoy a larger share of the market you are currently losing to competitors.
Reclaiming search markets for a Disruptive U.S. Medical School
Working with the American University of Integrative Sciences to better understand the needs and behaviours of their search market, Albion’s advertising specialists sneakily scraped competitor target keywords, bids and ads. We then rebuilt the uni’s Google Ads campaigns to generate a profitable flow of enquiries from potential students.
Increasing visibility for critical industries engineering giants
Specialist SEO knowhow and hands-on optimisation helped generate top rankings on Google for one of the UK government’s favoured engineering training firms. Achieving these rankings in national and international search results was instrumental to the company’s success which led to Edif ERA being bought by an even bigger beast.
Helping transform a UK executive consultancy into a market leader
Appleby Associates was saved from the history books by a new owner who was intent on reinventing the brand. Albion came on-board to redirect resources previously wasted on paid search marketing. We reinvested the monthly budget towards improving the site landing pages and generating increased Google traffic.
…Made a tremendous difference to the consistency and flow of the university website
Rebuilt our ads campaigns from the ground up – by month 2 we had cut our marketing spend in half and brought down our cost per conversion by 79% whilst more than doubling the number of enquiries
…Web industry knowledge and hard work ethic have been of great benefit to the University of Brighton… providing valuable insights and documentation for our web editors